The Great Sweet Pea Arugula Wonton Ravioli Race

My son and his buddy (both aspiring chefs) were testing out some new recipes at his friend’s house. They were looking for things that could be used as an appetizer, main dish or side dish. They came across this recipe for Sweet Pea Arugula Wonton Ravioli.

Now you may be wondering what a wonton ravioli is. Well, it’s ravioli that uses wonton wrappers instead of homemade pasta. Or, depending on how you make it and look at it, it might be a wonton filled with typical ravioli ingredients – or would that be a ravioli wonton? In any case, you get the idea.

Wontons are an excellent substitute for fresh pasta when making homemade raviolis, tortellini, etc. We’ve used them before and found they weren’t a bad alternative when you don’t have time to make homemade dough or you don’t want to break out the pasta machine. Wonton wrappers are thin and light. When boiled or steamed, they turn slightly translucent so the filling shines through making them perfect for presentation purposes.

I will admit that the texture and taste is a bit different than what you might expect from ravioli. It doesn’t have that eggy taste that you normally find with pasta. But then, I find that using store bought pasta sheets can be a bit pasty and somewhat tasteless so either way you may be giving up a little something for the convenience of a quick meal.

Okay, so back to this recipe. As I mentioned, the guys wanted to try different ways to make this recipe – both for flavor and presentation. They decided to make a bunch but cook them in different ways to see what they ended up with.

First up was by following the recipe as is, boiling the raviolis. They said these were good with the brown butter sauce, but as the original writer said, they can easily rupture especially if you over-stuff them or boil them too long.

The second batch was made following the same recipe, but instead of boiling the ravioli they steamed them in a skillet for 2-3 minutes. The results they said were even better. They had fewer mishaps with ruptures and some of the ravioli got a little brown and slightly crunchy on the outside which when combined with the brown butter made them even more flavorful.

A word of caution – seal the edges well before boiling or steaming or you’ll have a mess on your hands.

Both of these methods they said would be great as a main dish or side dish. For presentation purposes, they really liked the green filling against the yellowish wrapper and browned butter.

The last two methods was baking and deep frying. They took the same ingredients and instead of sealing the filling between two wrappers, they just pinched the edges of one up to form a sort of flower shape.

Half of these they added to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. They lightly sprayed the raviolis with non-stick baking spray to help them brown more evenly & baked them in the oven on 400 degrees for about 7-10 minutes, until they were lightly browned and crispy.

Finally they deep fried some for about 45 seconds to 1 minute – just until they turned golden brown.

The baked and fried methods made better appetizers than main dishes but both guys agreed that the flavor and presentation were still great.

The winner?

It was a tie. My son liked the baked ones best because they were crispy, made a great finger food and had less fat than the deep fried version. His buddy liked the steamed version best because he enjoyed the flavors of the brown butter mixing with the filling.

Next time you’re in the mood for something different. Give this recipe a try. Let me know how you cooked yours and what you thought about it.

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